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Bleacher Report – Vikings

Big-play impact – and flashy new socks? – showcase Cordarrelle Patterson’s ability

By Derek Wetmore

MINNEAPOLIS – Cordarrelle Patterson has always had a flashy side. He flexed those muscles before and during Sunday’s 30-24 win against the Arizona Cardinals.

Patterson had a big kick return touchdown, which helped the Vikings set a team record in the process. But before the kick return there were the kicks. Or rather, what was underneath the kicks.

Patterson in the first half debuted a pair of socks that he’s had for about four months now, he said – a pair of socks that have his likeness printed on them.

At halftime he changed out of them – perhaps at a coach’s request. And if so, that looks like a brilliant stroke of coaching after the fact. Evidently, the socks were the only thing holding back the dynamic return man.

#Vikings wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson sports himself on his socks.

— Brace Hemmelgarn (@bracehemmelgarn) November 20, 2016

He scored on the first play after the half, when a kick fell into his arms, his blockers set a path, and he navigated through a hole that he said was so big that a truck could have passed through it.

“There’s no way I could have missed it. I got up to it and I just made one cut,” Patterson said. “I seen the kicker – made the kicker miss and another dude behind me. It’s just green grass [after that].”

Patterson’s kick return touchdown made it 27-17 Vikings, and put them in the driver’s seat for the rest of the half. He also caught four passes for 53 yards, including a 30-yard grab just 3 plays before the Vikings scored a touchdown to take the lead. For an offense that struggles to crack the modest mark of 3 yards per carry in the running game, his screen passes seem like an appropriate substitute.

And how’s this for a veteran move? Late in the game with the Vikings driving, top receiver Stefon Diggs was hit on the head on his way to the ground, and the Cardinals were flagged for the hit. Diggs got up and in a situation that we’ve seen escalate countless time in the NFL, Patterson played the role of cooler head prevailing. He pulled Diggs back to the Vikings huddle before tempers had the chance to flare, and the Vikings got the benefit of the penalty, rather than having anything offset with extra-curricular activity after the whistle.

After the game a newspaper columnist in his late 90’s asked Patterson if he was having more fun this year, being more involved and having his best all-around season.

“I have fun every year,” Patterson said with a smile. “This is football, this is my job. You never see me not smiling; always having fun and just enjoying myself.”

Need more evidence that the once forgotten man is having fun as he’s making a difference for the Vikings in two phases of the game?

Patterson leapt into the crowd after he returned the kick for a touchdown, and he thinks he might have knocked a beer out of a fan’s hands. He wants to pay that back — with interest.

“I don’t know I just seen the fans just smiling right there and I jumped and I kind of fell – I think I knocked one of their beers over,” he said. “So I’m going to have to owe that person a beer, so if he find me just let me know, I got you. Two beers next time I see you.”

So now he’s a playmaker, a generous giver, and he’s helped a Vikings team that has struggled to score points in doing just that. Oh, and he hasn’t lost the flashy streak that we saw a few years ago from the rookie out of Tennessee.

“I might have to do it every week. I think it brings us good luck,” he smirked after a question about the purple socks bearing his face. Then he dove right back into Football Question Answering Mode. “No but these guys they fight their butts off. We’re ready for whatever challenge [there] is, and these guys work hard every week. … but I do like those socks though.”

“I done had ‘em for like four months, I always forgot ‘em,” he said. “[Saturday] night I was packing my bag I was like, ‘Hey, I need to pack these this week.’”

The post Big-play impact – and flashy new socks? – showcase Cordarrelle Patterson’s ability appeared first on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.

Source:: 1500 ESPN Sportswire

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